Development of a fully passive plenoptic thermal imaging system

Published : 1 January 2023

Uncooled thermal infrared cameras, based on the micro-bolometer technology, are present in several domains of application: industrial monitoring, automotive, automation, defense … To follow those high volume markets, there is a strong competition to develop more performant focal plane arrays, with smaller pixel pitch and including innovative optical functionalities. In this miniaturization context and optics integration closer to the focal plane array, we propose to evaluate a plenoptic architecture adapted to infrared micro-bolometer. To get more functionalities such as auto-focus, image correction or 3D, the use of dual or quad pixels are reported in the literature in the visible band.

The thesis objective is to define and design a passive low resolution plenoptic infrared system architecture, adapted to micro-bolometer sensors. Starting with a bibliography study and a familiarization with existing methods and algorithms, the PHD student will build specifications of each elementary blocs of the system: algorithms and method, micro-lens and optical objective. When the specifications of building blocks will be established, the micro-lens design and its coupling with the imaging optics and the bolometer will be performed using numerical simulations. Depending on its complexity, the manufacturing of the array of micro-lenses could be realized and an optical validation should confirm the designing function. In the same time, algorithm implementation will be done in order to achieve the reconstruction method selected and to ideally perform a proof of concept of the architecture by the end of the thesis.

The thesis will take place in the Laboratoire d’Imagerie Thermique et THz in the Département d’Optique et Photonique of the CEA LETI on the Grenoble site. You should benefit from a dynamic team with a high expertise in micro bolometer sensor and from synergy with others laboratories of the department working on related topics. The scientific and industrial interest of the topic could offer the possibility of presenting of your work in international conferences.

More information